There was at least one nice tide runner weakfish caught today in a back bay area of Cape May County. A few nice summer flounder were caught and released in grassy sound today also. There was also some weakfish caught by perch fishermen in their fyke nets in Atlantic County today. There was one confirmed 24″ striper caught from the beach yesterday.
Spring weakfish On The Water TV show:
What is unbelievably refreshing is how resilient the weakfish have proved to be. Considering in 2009 Dr. Jamie Geiger of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, suggested that the weakfish stock may have fallen to such lows that managers might wish to consider invoking the provisions of the Endangered Species Act as one of the management tools. The listing seemed like a sure bet. As any fish stock experiencing decades of unlimited commercial and recreational harvest would surely end up that way. A timely weakfish recovery was not expected by the ASMFC under any circumstances.
The good news is they were wrong. With only three years of historic weakfish regulations (limited harvest) they are showing up in numbers not seen in decades along the entire east coast.
The return of the weakfish in this month’s (May )issue of On The Water magazine covers it well.
Update: 2014 weakfish season was the best for me in a decade.
Beautiful spring weakfish I caught from the sand.
CJ Polhamus with his 30″ spring 2014 tide runner weakfish
Wayne McDermott and a summer 2014 weakfish
Bill with a nice size spring 2014 weakfish
Short stripers have gathered in good numbers at select locations on the Delaware Bay side of Cape May County. There has been at least one keeper striper caught from the ocean beach side of the county. Blood worms are the only bait to use at this point. There has been 3 summer flounder caught and one confirmed 8 # weakfish. This cold snap will slow the bite until the temperature bounces back up.
The NJ DEP, NJ F&G, NJ Federation of Sportsmen’s clubs, NJ Outdoor Alliance and the JCAA have been closing in on approval for New Jersey’s first artificial reef site in the Delaware Bay. While the exact site has not been chosen, conditions needed for approval favor the lower bay. This Delaware Bay reef site has the potential to be the most productive fishing location on the east coast.
Missy Alcorn with a nice late season Striped Bass
The striper bite here in Cape May County has been hot over the last week for those in the know. For those that are not in the loop it has been slow fishing. The lumps just off the beach about two miles have produced a good amount of keeper stripers for the fisherman that have stayed dialed in. The Delaware Bay has consistently produced some heavyweight stripers for a few sharpies, they are not the information sharing type.
The beach fishing is obviously not happening in Cape May County at this point. However, that did not stop Jeff and crew from catching stripers from the beach this week, the key, they headed north to ****** ***** State Park . They found many nice stripers there, including the one Jeff is holding above. Check out, Nick and Betty’s website for updated surf fishing reports from North Jersey.
Today I was sitting on my couch looking across the sound, wondering when the migratory fish are going to show up. I have been fishing hard and often, so far I have not seen or caught any migratory fish. I made it out today in-between wind gust and rain, once again I caught resident fish. The pictures of red drum, stripers and specks that I have posted over the last month are resident fish. The fall migratory fish are not in Cape May County NJ waters yet. The last year that the migratory fish were this late showing up was 1998. That year turned out to be the best fall fishing in my lifetime, lets hope for a repeat of the banner fall fishing of 1998.
Surf fishermen day dreams are made out of days like today. A fall crisp north-west wind blowing, clouds of anchovies, sand eels and peanut bunker in the surf. Big Mike pictured above, topped off the morning with his keeper striper.
Cape May co. Speckled sea trout
Ray with the first speck of the season, he released the speck seconds after the picture was shot. Every year a scout speck is caught about two weeks before the main body of specks show up. The new moon tide will hold the season’s forecast.
Jeff Polhamus and Sharpie with a few nice New Jersey red fish .
CJ Polhamus with his 22″ New Jersey red fish, he caught the beauty on 9-30-2013.
Mark is high hook of this elite group, this is one of his many 2013 New Jersey red fish.